Stimulating Perception Demand for New Markets and Customers

Stimulating Perception Demand for New Markets and Customers

We think perception demand stimulation is more revolutionary than evolutionary. Data can take you to Expectation but getting to Perception does imply, most times, there is no absolute data driving it. Creating the iPhone was not backed by typical customer data as Steve Jobs did not believe in surveys and focus groups. He did believe that even customers could not understand what they needed. But you give them the “next big thing”, they would come along. 

My point is this: data has a limitation at the perception level. Verizon, a big telecom player in the U.S. is data-driven but still (initially) rejected Apple’s offer for it to carry the iPhone. (iPhone is a perception level product.) The second player behind it, AT&T, took a risk, as it had nothing to lose then. Simply, data cannot explain most things when you begin to operate at the perception level of market creation. 

The key thing here is Awareness and Observation as having data on something which does not exist is hard. More so, extrapolation fails since to have perception, you have to do something that is not typical. That means extrapolating today for that future makes no sense.

Largely, perception is highly orthogonal, not parallel to what many market players are doing. That is why perception level products are disruptive as they typically lead to a new basis of competition.

 In this introductory video, I discuss why organizations must focus on developing products and services that go beyond the needs of customers to their expectations and perceptions. Focusing on the needs of customers is a recipe for disaster. The whole desire must be to deliver products and services at the level of customer perception where they are offered products and services which they might not have even imagined would be possible. But the day they see the products they will say “wow”. This also explains the limitations of focus groups because focus groups are  tethered to what the customers think they need. Perception of customer level  service is offering something which could not have been requested during focus groups, because such products will not come into the imaginations of the people being studied.

There are other videos in Tekedia Mini-MBA Week 8 board, and a member asked this question: “Good day Prof, thanks for the lecture material on stimulating perception demand. It’s very insightful. Prof, could you please provide a real life example/use case of using O-data and X-data to stimulate perception demand, if such exists? Many thanks.” The above was my response.

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One thought on “Stimulating Perception Demand for New Markets and Customers

  1. Data will show you what has happened, and not what will happen. Even when you rely on it to make prediction or forecasting, you will at best model a linear growth trajectory, not exponential. And in all of these, you are still basing your assumptions on things already in existence, being purchased by customers, and not on abstract product that is yet to be produced.

    This is where behavioural sciences could come handy, because if Steve Job had reasoned that humans largely prefer what is portable and cute, and rather than carrying plenty devices and machines, it stands to be beneficial that if a portable and cute device could take photograph, play music, carry out email functions, make phone call, search the web, etc; it’s something people could fall in love with: here comes iPhone!

    You will be applauded and revered when you do what is exceptional, but it takes doing what is profound to revolutionise or change the course of human history.

    Apple inspired a generation, it made ordinary people to dream and believe that anything is possible, it unlocked value that is way above what it has captured over the years. But to succeed in the perception demand construct, you have to possess the capability to see the future in the present.


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